I consider Reinventing Green Building to be a “must read” for people in the green building industry. It is well-written with good references and a clear message, certainly one of the most useful green building texts available. You hit the nail on the head when you focus on the need to make the experience of green building a positive one in order to have green buildings widely accepted and to have a system that is developed with extensive input from users rather than academic idealists. Insofar as turning it over to people who want to self-evaluate their performance, I am not sure the market can do this effectively yet. Too many people in the green building industry, due to the problems generated by LEED, have made themselves comfortable believing they know what green is without having any outside advice or input. While USGBC has been doing their victory dance claiming the green building movement and codes benefited from LEED, they have failed to take into account the bad taste their system has left and how detrimental that is for continuing green building development.

I still believe some type of framework needs to be in place to boost people to a higher level without punishing them, as LEED has done. Nevertheless, I want to give you a well done and thank you for producing such an extraordinary piece of work!
— Eric T. Truelove, P.E., GGA, LEED AP BD&C, Director of Sustainable Design Services, H & H Energy Services, Madison, Wisconsin
After single-handedly giving us a whole library of excellent books on green building, Jerry Yudelson has delivered his masterwork. Reinventing Green Building is his finest—and most important—contribution to the field of sustainability in the built environment. If you’re going to read one book about what the green building movement must do to address climate change, the global water crisis, and waste reduction, Reinventing Green Building should be your choice.
— Robert Cassidy, Executive Editor, Building Design & Construction
Jerry Yudelson is eminently qualified to write this book based on his long experience in the world of green buildings as a practitioner, commentator and leader of key sustainability organizations. He knows the issues, the people and the politics. What he has to say is always interesting, often provocative and worth reading.
— Michael Deane, LEED Fellow; Vice President and Chief Sustainability Officer, Turner Construction Company, New York, NY
If the 1968 publication of the “The Whole Earth Catalogue” was the birth of the environmental movement, then the challenge posed by Jerry Yudelson in this hard-hitting and clear-minded book is the maturing of global sustainability into adulthood. It’s not a surprise that Jerry would be the one to observe that the “Sustainability Emperor” isn’t wearing any clothes, because throughout his career, he has relentlessly raised the bar for progress as we strive to live in balance with our miraculous planet. Bravo Jerry!
— Jonah Cohen, AIA, Principal, Hacker architects, Portland, OR
Whether you are a fan, a critic, or both, of LEED and other green building rating systems, I think we can all agree that while the current rating systems have spurred significant advances in the industry, they are not gaining broad acceptance and achieving measurable results fast enough. Fundamental, yet critical potential for achieving energy savings, water conservation and carbon emissions reductions are still untouched in broad swaths of the built environment. In his latest book, Jerry Yudelson lays out a clear case for why a new approach is needed, and presents a practical, well-researched and intelligent path to unlock this potential and generate the results we all strive for.
— Alan Scott, FAIA, LEED Fellow, Director, YR&G, Portland, OR
Jerry Yudelson, one of the pioneers of green building, has written a new book intended to reinvigorate the sustainability movement. With the growth of new green building registrations stalled for the past 6 years, Jerry explores new approaches to integrate with current and evolving technologies to improve accuracy while greatly reducing the time and resources required. Jerry says: “Owners feel that if you’re smart enough to be hired to design a building and you’re certified as a LEED specialist, you should be smart enough to document their project and give it a final certification. So do I!” I couldn’t agree more!
— Richard J. Mitchell, AIA, Managing Principal, MACKENZIE, Portland, OR
Whenever statistics are presented on comparing the “virtual” (as designed) versus the “real” (as built) performance of LEED certified green buildings, it invariably provokes a thought reaction– is the glass half-empty or half-full? Our fragmented building industry would be well-served by this book which cuts to the chase on challenges confronting the whole business of building delivery and offers an optimistic and pragmatic path towards a life cycle view of future green building evaluation.
— Khee Poh Lam, PhD, Professor of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA
Once again Jerry has looked around the corner for us and has the direction we are heading, and it isn’t always pretty. A world “scout” in the truest sense of the word, he sees the hazards ahead and creates the necessary markings for a new trail. Jerry has been intimately involved with the major building rating systems since their inception and sees how they are holding us back rather than bringing us forward. This book presents a more comprehensive approach to what we mean by green buildings and a better way to truly assess their performance in a way that will make a real change.
— Christian Klehm, LEED Fellow, President, Energy & Environmental Solutions, Pittsburgh, PA
Finally, a book that doesn’t just tell us how green building ratings are broken, but actually offers real solutions! Jerry’s decade-and-a-half as a hands on LEED practitioner, and his leadership roles with both major green building rating systems, make him more than qualified to kick-start the green building revolution that he helped create.
— Lawrence (Larry) Clark, GGP, LEED AP, Principal, Sustainable Performance Solutions, Miami, FL
Reinventing Green Building offers critical and straightforward research to demonstrate the accomplishments and deficiencies of certification models. As a green building authority and catalyst for transformation, Jerry Yudelson has been on the forefront of the green building efforts for the last 15 years. He has written on growth of the industry in numerous publications. With his analysis, Yudelson challenges the new professional leaders to re-conceptualize technological solutions. He proposes transformations that are needed to make the built environment far more resource-efficient and sustainable.
— Thomas Spiegelhalter, Professor of Architecture, Florida International University, Miami, FL and Spiegelhalter Architects, Freiburg, Germany
This book provides a great review of how the green building movement has been a disruptive force for positive innovation in the real estate, design, construction and manufacturing sectors of the economy over the past 15 years. Jerry does a great job of outlining the challenges we now face and provides suggestions on how to achieve the goals that we are striving for. I agree with his thesis that we need to dramatically improve our utilization of technology and innovative workflows to simplify the deployment of sustainable solutions into the built environment.
— Paul Shahriari, CEO/Founder, ecomedes.com, Atlanta, GA
Jerry Yudelson, a true champion of sustainability, proposes to expand green building certification to 25-percent—far above the one-percent achieved by LEED—using an approach that we should adopt immediately. I agree with him, point counting is a flaw of current certification systems, and it is time to focus on specific green building goals, such as zero net energy, and reducing water use, and to streamline processes to allow building certification immediately after construction.
— Hernando Miranda, PE, Principal, Soltierra, Inc., Dana Point, CA
Jerry Yudelson’s thought provoking book Reinventing Green Building provides expert insight into a stagnated industry in need of a new perspective. By highlighting issues and identifying solutions, this book will accelerate the conversation to help increase adoption of green building strategies.
— Kelsey Mullen, former director, LEED for Homes Multifamily Program, Carlsbad, CA
After authoring more than a dozen influential books, Jerry Yudelson is the definition of a game changer. In Reinventing Green Building, Yudelson focuses his disruptive thinking on a green building market that is thirsty for continued growth. How will green buildings continue to change the world, and shape the landscape of our built environment in the years to come? Read this book to find out.
— Drew Shula, LEED AP BD+C, ID+C, GGP, Principal, Verdical Group, Pasadena, CA
This book encourages everyone to think beyond certification systems: Investment costs should be considered in conjunction with energy savings, hence to the benefit of nature and our planet. Investors and contractors should learn from experienced field facility maintenance teams how effective and useful the Green Building philosophy is. Jerry not only outlines issues and failures after 15 years’ experience with Green Building, but also seeds new ideas to increase our efforts to meet the common aims of ‘The 2030 Challenge.’
— Martin Bismark, Geschäftsführer/General Manager, Sauter Building Control International, Freiburg, Germany
In Reinventing Green Building, Yudelson breaks through the stasis that has kept the green building movement trapped in 20th century approaches far too long. With new insights, he offers a path that can transform the way we think about, measure, and achieve the full benefits of sustainable design. Yudelson matter-of-factly charts a course that is exciting, hopeful and long past due, showing us why the glory days of green building are yet to come.
— David A. Schaller, US Environmental Protection Agency, Sustainability Coordinator (retired), Author of Sustainable Practices blog, Tucson, AZ
I’ve had the pleasure of working with Jerry Yudelson on several initiatives in the green building movement, and we have talked in depth about the subject matter this book covers. This is compelling reading for anybody who truly wants to ‘walk the walk’ with regard to reducing carbon emissions in the built environment and furthering the mission of sustainable design on a larger, more meaningful scale.
— John McIsaac, Communications Strategist, McIsaac Communications, Portland, OR
In Reinventing Green Building, Jerry offers up a much needed and long overdue conversation about alternative, pragmatic green building approaches that leverage leading edge technologies to drive a laser focus on impacting carbon, waste and water reduction. If we move beyond the conversation of what works for the 1%, we can truly create solutions that are scalable at the individual, community, national and international levels.
— Lisa Barnard, Sustainable Construction Consultant, Fortune 100 manufacturer
Once again, Jerry Yudelson breaks new ground with his brilliantly researched findings and thought provoking insights in Reinventing Green Building. This book is exactly what the commercial real estate and building industry needs to reignite sustainability and move beyond greening just Class A office buildings. The book proposes practical solutions and technologies that building owners and operators can implement, not only to achieve improved energy, water and resource efficiency but also to maximize building performance and maintenance.
— Devin Saylor, former Director of Sustainability, Skanska Commercial Development Europe
A green building authority and catalyst for transformation, Jerry Yudelson has been on the forefront of the green building efforts and written on growth of the industry for the last 15 years. Reinventing Green Building offers critical and candid research to illustrate the successes and shortcomings of certification models. He challenges the new professional leaders to re-conceptualize technological solutions to further the revolution that is needed to outpace the direction of the built environment.
— Alison G. Kwok, PhD, Professor of Architecture, University of Oregon, Eugene, OR
Jerry Yudelson, the Godfather of Green, promotes a new approach to sustainability for the 99%. While green rating systems have had positive effects, Jerry notes that less than 1% of buildings nationally have been certified, and that the majority of existing building have big opportunities for waste, water and energy reductions. Jerry’s strategy is to cut through the bureaucracy and expense of the current rating systems, and push for simple and profound change, that will dramatically reduce energy, water and waste for the other 99%.
— Steven A. Straus, PE, CEO, Glumac, Los Angeles, CA
Throughout his career, Jerry Yudelson has been at the forefront of creating sustainable solutions for significant problems. After helping to create and foster the widespread adoption of the LEED and other green building systems; his new book reflects on their initial success and asks the hard questions about why they are not measuring up to the challenges of creating truly sustainable buildings. With wit and courage, Jerry makes a clear-eyed assessment of the flaws of the current sustainable certification systems and lays out pragmatic and inspirational strategies to help us all achieve a better world.
— Bob Shemwell, FAIA, Principal, Overland, San Antonio, TX
Sustainable architecture, which today has a high degree of complexity, is not a closed concept but is in a state of continuous development. The holistic approach of sustainability is also an expression of a responsible attitude towards problems such as climate change and resource consumption. Its claim goes far beyond international certification standards. In his present book, Jerry Yudelson discusses this concern and formulates inspiring new ideas on how we have to act to achieve better sustainable results.
— Christoph Ingenhoven, Ingenhoven Architects, Düsseldorf, German
This book gives an objective, analytic view and constructive critique on how good we were up to now in our market transformation, but at the same time provides a useful orienteering tool for the green community on how to proceed. It clears out many doubts raised in past years on certification tools, shows a way out and gives relief. Jerry has so much to tell. Thanks again for pushing us forward!
— Marija Golubovic, LEED AP, USGBC faculty, Founder and Principal, Energo Energy Efficiency Engineering, Belgrade, Serbia
I have witnessed Jerry Yudelson’s passionate engagement in the green building arena since 1997. His devotion to the market transformation of how we design, construct and maintain buildings has utilized his multi-faceted roles as an engineer, facilitator, consultant, trainer, speaker and author. Reinventing Green Building is unique among the hundreds of books about green building, including his own prior publications. This book asks questions and postulates opportunities for dramatic changes to green building certifications. The timing of this book could not have been better. We’ve hit the wall. We’re running out of time! Can you help?
— Nathan Good, FAIA, Principal, Nathan Good Architects, Salem, OR
Jerry knows we must transform the building industry to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. He has the knowledge and wisdom to push hard for this transformation. This book makes a strong case for that transition and provides a vision of next-gen green building. It will help generate the tough conversations and changes that we need to get moving – so let’s get on with it!
— Mark Wilhelm, Corporate Director, Sustainability and Climate Neutrality Initiatives, Ameresco, Inc., Phoenix, AZ
Jerry Yudelson continues to exhibit a great understanding of the pulse of sustainable design in the built environment. This new contribution to green building design is much needed and will propel the dialog beyond its current entrenchment of building scope. Jerry is a sustainability visionary, and Reinventing Green Buildings will jump- start the industry to look ahead.
— Ronald van der Veen, AIA, LEED AP, Principal, NAC Architecture, Seattle, WA
Jerry’s ideas in this book are spot on about disrupting the status quo with a sensible building rating system based on a simple to comprehend formula of KPIs driven by smart building technology and data analytics. This rating system is needed to help bring in a new generation of building designers and owners that have rejected the status quo. It will also benefit experienced practitioners like me for validating the carbon impacts of the built environment, since carbon emissions will likely be monetized in the not too distant future.
— Brad Miller LEED AP BD+C and EBO+M, GGP, GHG-IQ, CDT President, Environmental Concepts Company, Inc., Irvine, CA
This book makes a significant contribution to unravel the complexities of current green building certification systems. Through this book Jerry builds a fact-based case on why green building should be the rule rather then the exception, how we can simplify the pathway to get there using new and updated technologies, and illustrates the significant impact green buildings have on the world. It is simply put a literary masterpiece!
— Beth Holst, former VP Credentialing and Strategic Alliances/Business Partners for Green Building Certification Institute and U.S. Green Building Council
Green certifications have arguably fallen short of their promise to transform the real estate industry. Drawing on 20 years of experience, Yudelson explains why - citing rigid criteria, complex rating systems, cumbersome bureaucracies and high costs. He reminds us that in spite of our incredible technological capacity, we are using only a small percentage of that capacity to reduce our environmental impact. Casting a fresh eye on the green building movement, he proposes a smart, simple and sustainable approach to steer us back on course quickly and cost effectively.
— Jiri Skopek, Managing Director, Sustainability, Jones Lang LaSalle, Chicago, IL
Bringing together the importance of green buildings and the technological challenge with the Internet of Things and big data analytics, Jerry is way ahead of his time. The book is vital to press the reset button and start rethinking of how sustainability can be really integrated into the real estate business - and this with every building, no matter if certified or not.
— Dagmar Hotze, Sustainability Video-journalist, Hamburg, Germany
Buildings are one of the last big industries that have been essentially unaffected by technology. The Green Building movement likes to think otherwise, but the changes they have influenced are mostly cosmetic and have only achieved incremental results. Jerry Yudelson knows this more than most, having been a LEED Fellow for several years and deeply involved in numerous green building programs. If our industry is going to really move the needle, then we have to take a dramatically different approach to buildings—all buildings not just our shiny, masthead examples.
— Deborah Noller, CEO and Founder, Switch Automation, Inc., San Francisco, CA and Sydney, Australia
Jerry Yudelson is a disruptive innovator in the race to Carbon Neutrality. Jerry contends that we have only tackled less than 1% of the building changes needed to achieve our climate commitments, but through the use of new building technologies we have the solutions to move our goals closer in a Smart, Simple and Sustainable platform. This call to action is a must read and a must implement.
— Sue Sylvester, LEED AP BD+C, Co-Founder, USGBC Arizona Chapter, Phoenix, AZ
Reinventing Green Building marks the provocative wakening up and realizing that the good green groundbreaking had been highjacked by capitalism and consumerism selling the illusion of perfection of green. He is refreshingly bringing it back to the systematic logic of the symbiosis of science and art as the promising future of ecological design.
— Martin Despang, Professor of Architecture, University of Hawai’i at Manoa and Principal, Despang Architekten, Hannover, Germany
This is not the first time that Jerry Yudelson shocks the cozy “greenbuilding scene.” While Certification Systems for sustainable architecture have helped first to start and then to substantiate a more serious debate about resource-saving buildings – the whole trend has recently hit a roadblock. The amount of certified building is still laughably low compared to the overall output of buildings – and much worse, as it seldom factors in the actual energy performance of a building. Yudelson does not criticize the current greenbuilding rating systems because he does not feel strongly about them – quite the opposite. This rightfully critical book will help elevate the discussion to a whole new level!
— Professor Ulf Meyer, Berlin, Germany
Once a story of success, over time LEED was applied only to certain sectors of the construction industry, with overall rather small carbon reduction. Either the green building movement will become more successful soon or it will be considered a failure in retrospective. In this regard it is not sufficient to tweak the existing building model; it is essential to seek new models that are more aspirational and inspirational. In this context Jerry Yudelson’s new book is a great step in this direction; it’s a ‘must read’ for everyone who agrees that the built environment must change radically.
— Thomas Auer, Principal, Transsolar, Stuttgart, Germany
Today, we need to attract more buildings into the sustainability movement, not push them away through long, expensive, tortuous roads to certification. Yudelson’s concept of “smart, simple and sustainable” is the right approach. Let’s open the way for every building to get greener. It’s time.
— Robert (Bob) Best, Executive Vice President, Jones Lang LaSalle, Chicago, IL